Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Monday made a U-turn on his stand on accession of the state to Indian Union saying Kashmir is an integral part of India.
Jammu and Kashmir has acceded to India. Jammu and Kashmir is a part of India and there are no two views about it. There may be differences in the manner J&K acceded (to India) as compared to other states,but that does not call into question our accession to India, he said.
To a question whether the state was an integral part of India,Omar said: If you accede to India then are you not an integral part of India?
A week ago,in an interview to UKs Telegraph newspaper,he had said Britains peace process with Northern Ireland and Scotland devolution could inspire a future settlement of J&K. In September,he told a visiting EU delegation that the states political issues had their genesis in the partition of the country when future of all the states other than J&K was decided. In that context,he had pointed out that while all the states had acceded to Union of India and then merged with it,Jammu and Kashmir had only acceded (to India) and not merged. That is why we have special status,our own constitution and state flag, he had elaborated.
Omar said that by talking about the Ireland peace process or Scotland devolution,he did not mean that such a model could be implemented immediately. He said one can learn from every process be it Israel-Palestine,Northern Ireland or Scotland,and added that whatsoever issues got resolved have been through dialogue and not through violence. In this context,he also referred to the China model saying that while China is one,it has different systems one for Tibet and another for Hong Kong.
He reiterated that the National Conference wanted peaceful resolution of the Kashmir issue. I have repeatedly told the Centre to take into consideration all the roadmaps (submitted by different political parties) and implement the one they consider appropriate, he added. Urging separatists to take part in the dialogue,Omar said unfortunately they take one step forward and two steps backwards,and added that even the separatists admit that violence was no solution to any issue.